# Industrial revolution strategy (post mortem and ideas)

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Acharis    5979

What if instead paying salaries. You had a tierd population system like in the Cesar games?
Yes... I was thinking of pops tiers too, I would also prefer to avoid too much economy for pops (like salary from player's treasury or them buying stuff from player). But I have some problems how to fit it into the game.

* how to call those tiers/levels of population?

* there is already "pops level" in a form of education, that was important in that era and I wouldn't want to get rid of schools... Education might be redundant with those tiers of pops.

* how to upgrade pops to higher tiers? Manualy or automatic? What happens if there is not enough luxury goods (required downgrade)?

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TechnoGoth    2937

In the caesar games upgrades were automatic once a household had access to the necessary resources or services.  For instance to go from level 3 to 4 might require you have school in that province.   Not building a school means that even if you supplied every other resource your pop never surpassed level 3.

What happened in ceaser is you built a say a pottery workshop and a market every house within range of the market gained pottery as long as you had enough production to supply them.  Insufficient pots meant houses either didn't upgrade or downgraded.  There was no player interaction in the upgrade process beyond building the right products and services.    As soon as a house had what they needed they upgraded and if they couldn't get it for long enough they downgraded.

What I would suggest is that each turn if you have enough service and resource capacity available in a province then a percentage of the people advance one level. Resources and services covers everything from toilet paper to a university.  The player is then challanged to have the right mix up population, production, and services.

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Acharis    5979

Maybe like this (please, make a sanity check, especially if that's not too complex):

* I agree that promotion to higher classes should be automatic. Manual worked in Imperialism 1 & 2, but they had no provinces with separate population.

* I think I will need 3 classes:

1) peasants (farmers, sherpherds, fishermen, wood cutters), they require no housing and have low consumption needs

2) labourers (factory workers, miners), they benefit from basic education

3) intellectuals (teachers, clerks, administrators), high education is critical, sophisticated consumption needs, require luxury goods

Consumption - population do not pay for goods, just consume it. It increases their happiness (each class separately). So, it's easy to keep peasants happy since they don't require much consumer goods, but if you want highly educated intellectuals you need spice, sugar, tabaco and other stuff.

Efficiency - the happiness affects efficiency (each class separately), also education affects efficiency (except peasants). Therefore a happy and highly educated pops are more efficient in their jobs.

Money flow (sort of) - population is being paid by production facilities (farms, mines, factories), but they never spend any money, it just increases their happiness. Population pay taxes, which reduces their happiness. The player can also get money by exporting finshed goods (the prefered method of getting funds, since it allows high wages and low taxes, therefore a happy population).

Migration & jobs & promotions - the migration and jobs taken would be driven by happiness. Each production facility would have wages, it attracts workers. Also, highly educated pops would get more happiness from haigher class jobs (educated don't want to be peasants anymore) even if the wages are worse. A portion of population would each turn check the happiness of lower and higher class, if these are better than their current one they will promote/demote one level.

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powerneg    2010

Do you want (complex) road systems appearing/build and units moving around the map,

or rather just having each province have some icons to represent some factories, a railroadstation and some military bases ?

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Acharis    5979

Do you want (complex) road systems appearing/build and units moving around the map,

or rather just having each province have some icons to represent some factories, a railroadstation and some military bases ?

No, definitely not complex. The game is not about transporting goods. There can be roads and railroads, but more like a variable, not the core mechanic.

As for units, I strongly prefer to avoid them, or to minimize that aspect.

Generally I want provinces (with icons as you described) and then detailed province view (with info what exactly the province has).

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Acharis    5979

A screen of the provinces map. It should make it easier to visualize

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powerneg    2010

The game is definately gonna need governors or something to give bonuses to/change provinces.

so they become more efficiënt and have spare workers that can work for you.

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Acharis    5979

The game is definately gonna need governors or something to give bonuses to/change provinces.

Good, I'm finally starting to convey the spirit of the game :) Yes, for such a game governors of provinces are a must. That's one of the reason for so few provinces, so it's managable by the player, so he can remember (more or less) where he put what governor and which province produces what.

The bonuses part is pretty obvious to me, but can you elaborate on the "change provinces" part?

For the farmers, just let them make their money in the kapitalistic/free trade

That's my biggest dilemma/objection. Have you played Victoria: the empire under the sun? It had such "free trade and posession of things by the population", in the end I have not enjoyed it so much (all the random factories that were popping up built by capitalists population), I had no control of that aspect and not so much fun...

On the other hand, assets owned by population is natural and realistic and makes sense...

I need an advice/opinion on this.

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powerneg    2010

The bonuses part is pretty obvious to me, but can you elaborate on the "change provinces" part?

I meant that the bonus(es) should count to something that make the needs of the provinces change,

for example instead of giving a bonus of +10% income from selling the factory-goods, have universities produce new graduates quicker so the

province has a constant (higher)need for new housing and jobs or something.

That's my biggest dilemma/objection. Have you played Victoria: the empire under the sun? It had such "free trade and posession of things by the population", in the end I have not enjoyed it so much (all the random factories that were popping up built by capitalists population), I had no control of that aspect and not so much fun...

On the other hand, assets owned by population is natural and realistic and makes sense...
I need an advice/opinion on this.

But i only have one opinion and already gave it :(

Nah but seriously, i haven't played Victoria but i 've played another game(whom's title i don't recall, probably for good reason) that had a big independent kapitalism/free trade going on, there was no control, but also no clear way of knowing what they were going to do, which often meant opponents killed my civilian-units because they wandered off; babysitting without baby-sitting tools xD

Thing is, thus far you 've been designing the game(the real game, what the player gets/needs to do) and only coming to the farmers last and trying to dump the last of the game-formulas/balance on that group to make it a working whole, seems like the correct design-focus to me :)

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My brother is an artist so I can get him to make a better map.

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Not to sound to critical but the game is un-user friendly. It would be nice if there was a tutorial. But overall its pretty good, it has some artwork that needs to be done...but its still a prototype so thats acceptable.

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Acharis    5979

But i only have one opinion and already gave it

Me sorry, I know I'm mercilessly squeeze out the last ounce of idea/feedback from people Thanks for posting.

Another questions related to farms.

- Should there be one "crop" per province or more? For example, should one province produce both wheat and sheep?

- "peasants" class would deal with fishing, farming and woodcutting. Fishing does not eat up land (obvious), but what about woodcutting? If you build a woodcutters camps should it reduce the amount of farms? Or should there be "forest resource" that provide "slots" for woodcutting that is not competing with farming?

- should all provinces have forests (ability to produce wood)? Or just some?

My brother is an artist so I can get him to make a better map.

The map is generated, not drawn (click the EditMap button to check it). Unless you meant a better shape of provinces and colours?

BTW, there are various "modes" there, which one you think look best?

Not to sound to critical but the game is un-user friendly. It would be nice if there was a tutorial. But overall its pretty good, it has some artwork that needs to be done...but its still a prototype so thats acceptable.

I always make the tutorial last (when I know what will work how in the final version ). But, please, continue keeping an eye on userfriendliness level, it's important.

Edited by Acharis

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powerneg    2010

- Should there be one "crop" per province or more? For example, should one province produce both wheat and sheep?

If the farmers are gonna stay "independent" they should have no particular problems supplying the province, else the player will have to deal with those problems, and since farmers are "independent" or at least do what they please, it would only frustrate a player .

(i assume only one crop would give the farmers problems)

Wood:

as i would do it, provinces have X forests, enough to provide for X lumbercamps, a player can research/add a replantation-building to a province and from then on the province will have enough trees to supply X multiplied by 1.2 or 1.5 lumbercamps.

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Acharis    5979

Wood:
as i would do it, provinces have X forests, enough to provide for X lumbercamps, a player can research/add a replantation-building to a province and from then on the province will have enough trees to supply X multiplied by 1.2 or 1.5 lumbercamps.
Well... I want to avoid "reforestation" in any form. I mean, the game is primarily about industry, about dirty coal and foundries polluting rivers to make steel. Making the player worrying about planting trees, just... does not seem compatible with the mood of the game :)

- each province has 3 farming slots (all fully developed/fixed, can't change these), the player can set what is produced in each slot (wheat/sheep/cattle/fruits). There is an icon describing what will grow best on what slot (a typical province would have 1-2 fertile slots suitable for wheat and 1 suitable for animals only (sheep can breed perfectly everywhere, even in mountains))

- each coastal province has also fishing slot with max fishing wharfs, you need to develop/build these (you start with 0/20 for example)

- some provinces have wood slots (identical like fish)

- some provinces have ores (coal, iron, tin, copper, clay) slots (identical like fish)

Each of the slots above would have "richness" parameter (50%-150%) which describes how efficient gathering that resource/crop there is (do not mistake it with max number of buildings).  So for example you could have 0/20 coal slot with 80% richness (which mean you can build 20 coal mines in that province but each would produce only 80% of default number of coal), forests usually/always would have everywhere richness of 100%.

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powerneg    2010

You can have the efficiency of every(/every 5th) next fishing slot diminish as the fishermen need to go out to unfished waters.

What's gonna be the goal of the game ?

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Acharis    5979

New prototype:

http://www.silverlemur.com/work/ir-prototype.zip

- interface completely redone

- workers allocation system (each factory/mine/farm sets up wages and population change jobs over time; there is no migration between provinces yet)

Production of resources is half broken in this version, ignore.

What's gonna be the goal of the game ?
Not sure, most likely some economic goal (reach something/build something/make people happy/etc). Also, there will be most likely a campaign system, like there are 20 scenarios that you unlock linearly (each time you start in a new island with different setup and different objectives).

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Acharis    5979

Standard  of living mechanic

I was thinking, the Anno1xxx/Caesar/Pharaoch "tiers of people that require more advanced goods" does not fit with the rest of the mechanics so well, yet I like the concept. So I thought, how about a button to increase "Standard of living" (consumption of goods) for all your population?

At the beginning people require just food and almost nothing more, when you increase/upgrade the standard of living they start (gradually, not like suddenly 100% population require fancy sugar) demand/consume more/different goods. It affects all your population, but the classes (peasants/labourers/clerks) are considered separately (so peasants will basicly need almost nothing for the whole game while higher classes would require more and more luxuries; therefore if your country has mainly peasants and high standard of living they still would be consuming a modest/low amount of fancy stuff since mostly higher classes consume it). You can also decrease the standard of living (but the population will be unhappy).

Why the player would want to increase standard of living:

- it positively affect taxes, boosts research, boosts efficiency per worker, boosts growth rate and immigration

- some stuff might be simply locked until you reach a certain level of standard of living

- the population will have "expected level of standard of living" which increases over time, you need to meet it or face riots

If you are not able to deliver the goods it decreases the happiness of population (if there is a small shortage (in percentage of needs) the drop would be minimal, so there is no problem with small shortages as long as overall you mostly deliver what you promised).

Questions:

- what you think overall? does it make sense? does it sound fun? do you have a better idea or an idea how to improve it?

- should the standard of living be per province or one per whole country?

- how to "theme/rename" the "increase standard of living" button? it sounds so artificial...

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Acharis    5979

New version of the prototype available (link 2 posts above :D)

I have a problem with money flow, and could use some thoughts/advice.

Overall, the economic system in this game is artifical and it's more like a "state capitalism" since the player owns and controls all factories. It's on purpose (I exchanged here realism for fun) and I accept it will have some drawbacks. Now, how to make it work...

* population go to factories and get  jobs there, the factory automaticly adjust the wages (range from $1.00 to$9.00) to maximize the output (if not enough workers it increases wages, if too many it decreases), population is drawn to factories that have the highest wages (that's the only purpose of the wages mechanic)

* population pay tax each turn (fixed $5.00) * most likely the population will also pay for consumed goods (Standard of living mechanic topic), since this make balancing it easier (no other reasons) Important thing, the money comes out of the air. The population is not accumulating the money they earned in jobs (these money just disappear) and when they pay taxes (or "pay" for consumed goods) this money also comes out of nowhere. The problem is twofold: 1) in a long run all factories end up setting up$1.00 wages (if there is a slightest unemployment)

2) the money flow is chaotic, the player is either earning tons of money or losing tons of money

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powerneg    2010

Put all the money the workers earn into the unregulated sector, then tax it ? (by % )

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Acharis    5979

Put all the money the workers earn into the unregulated sector, then tax it ? (by % )

You are a genius powerneg :) That solves half the problems.

So, population is taxed by % of wages (so it's not chaotic anymore). I also modified wages so they depend not only on factory needs but also on the unemployment rate in the province (with 0 unemployment the wages will not fall below $5.00 and only at severe 50%+ these fall to$1.00).

OK, it works, but it's a bit rough (also the player has always negative income since wages would always exceed taxes (since taxes are % of wages), at least without export). I wonder how to refine it...

Especially, I wonder about the consumption mechanic. Should population pay for the goods (to the player)? Or just keep these free (much simplier I suppose)?

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Unduli    2498

Actually that's a good question.

What's the point if people are either unemployed/farmer or worker? I mean is there a way for player to "lose" beside extreme underutilization?

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powerneg    2010

How does this sound:

The player's goal, or at least a high priority during the game must be to keep/make the people happy.
Give the player access to the country 's money printer, aka the player has unlimited money.
(make most of the advanced buildings cost resources besides money)

The player does need to account for the money in the country though; the people are going to want to spend it.
(Keep check how much money is present in each province)
Introduce the first few consumer-goods, let the player set pricing, probably picking between cheap/normal/expensive,

let him set the pricing for each province individually but give the option to set for the entirecountry as well.

Then introduce the dictator-mechanics that you were working on.

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ActiveUnique    867

Acharis has many similar threads. I'll put this idea here.

You could make the game simplistic and more personal if you were to change the human statistics.  Statistics represent a group and elevate the reader's power, but statistics have no personality, and that's something a few players will crave, personality.

A city could be one entire person, one piece in the set. Their resources can be a glass of water, an apple, a screwdriver, a butter knife, etc. A faction is a thought in their head and can be represented as a % of the conversation they'll make. The metaphor is very open ended. The game would still be about micromanagement.

Instead of dealing impersonally with quantities and numbers, the reader has been presented with a person first. Any attempt to recognize this person is actually a group becomes secondary to solving the problem: The problem is you need their resources and at the same time keep them happy, prevent them from gaining power over you.

I remember reading several details implying proximity is important. A clever trick like making the people stand still, so they can only talk to their neighbor covers that. Someone with rebellious ideas only has a strong influence on his neighbor, and newly seeded ideas spread slower.

Understanding geography is probably the only reason to bring an actual map into the game. Strategic warfare games are about locations and dominance. The idea has been to avoid this mentality.

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Acharis    5979

The player's goal, or at least a high priority during the game must be to keep/make the people happy.
Give the player access to the country 's money printer, aka the player has unlimited money.
Unlimited money is not possible/desirable for two reasons: 1) I need money for international trade 2) in that era the money was under gold standard insteads of paper money you can print.

But the rest sounds good (keeping people happy, setting up prices levels, population wealth per province). Just if we can use these ideas without unlimited money...

What's the point if people are either unemployed/farmer or worker? I mean is there a way for player to "lose" beside extreme underutilization?
You mean the way of losing the game or the economic system? Generally, I have not planned any lose condition related to economy (it can only indirectly cause it if your population is unhappy and they rebel or you fail to achieve a goal on time due to lack of economic assets).

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powerneg    2010

I need money for international trade

nah you just  need another coin for international trade, .

in that era the money was under gold standard insteads of paper money you can print.

The gold standard was about not needing (physical) gold as payment, and instead using paper money.

The gold was locked away, and you could theoretically get a piece of gold back for your paper money if you wanted to, that's how the money was promised to keep value,

In the UK this promise is still printed on the money.
It was all an attempt to make (paper) money valuable.

With unlimited money, it is up to the player to give the money value.

Do keep in mind the player is leading a country, if at some point the total amount of money in the country(owned both by the population and the government) is double that of a few turns ago, you have a strangely balanced game under the gold standard,
while with unlimited money, the player has an obligation to suck the money back out of the country(population)

This all said, it may be too complicated to both design and present to the player.